Re: White space in manuals

Subject: Re: White space in manuals
From: Leslie McKendry-Smith <McKendrySmith -at- MBNET -dot- MB -dot- CA>
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 08:57:53 -0600

On Friday, January 31, 1997, Jeanette Evans <evans -at- MR -dot- PICKER -dot- COM> wrote:

>Can anyone provide me with specific references material to support that
>idea that the use of white space in user documents can help users find
>information to better complete tasks and recover from errors?

I recently read "Human Factors for Technical Communicators" by Marlana Coe
(John Wiley & Sons, ISBN 0-471-03530-0). She says to use white space "to
indicate organization, separate modules of information, convey relationships
emphasize pieces of information, direct users' focus, and afford an open
look and feel to your information." She also recommends 20 to 40 percent
white space in hardcopy documents and 40 to 60 percent white space in online

Leslie McKendry-Smith
mckendry -at- mbnet -dot- mb -dot- ca

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